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With an estimated 430 different species, cranesbills are one of the most species-rich plant genera - and are also native to the entire globe, including the Arctic and Antarctic. Numerous cranesbills are often planted as flowering perennials in gardens, while others - especially native species - can mutate into unwanted weeds due to their eagerness to grow. Cranesbill is becoming a problem that is difficult to combat, especially in agriculture, and many lawn owners are also annoyed by the fast-growing herb.

Cranesbill reproduces very quickly and is therefore sometimes considered a weed

Common cranesbill weeds

As a gardener, whether you regard wild cranesbills as weeds or give them a place in the garden is entirely up to you. But be careful, because the species mentioned are extremely vigorous and crowd out other plants very quickly. Fighting it is difficult, basically the only thing that helps is regularly uprooting or digging up the plants.

Little cranesbill

The small cranesbill (Geranium pusillum), which is very common in our latitudes, grows to a height of about 30 centimeters and blooms tirelessly between May and October. The seeds ripen between June and October and can be thrown up to two meters from the plant.

Slit-leaved cranesbill

The annual Slotted Cranesbill (Geranium dissectum) can grow up to 60 centimeters high. It prefers to grow in gardens, along roadsides and in fields. This species also throws its ripe seeds several meters away and therefore spreads quickly and extensively.


Ruprechtskraut is also known as Stinking Cranesbill (Geranium robertianum) and has a very long flowering and seed ripening period. The delicate, light purple flowers can be seen from April until well into autumn - the plant also forms a corresponding number of seeds. Incidentally, the very common cranesbill species is edible.

Meadow cranesbill

The meadow cranesbill (Geranium pratense) grows up to 80 centimeters high and has bright purple flowers that bloom between June and August. This species also hurls its seeds away - they are also spread further by composted cuttings. As the name suggests, the Meadow Cranesbill prefers to grow in meadows and lawns.

Fight cranesbill in the lawn

Some gardeners are happy about the flowering herb in the lawn, for others it is a nuisance, especially since the cranesbill spreads very quickly. There are several ways to get rid of the unwanted weeds:

  • Control with pesticides - has the disadvantage that other plants are also affected
  • regular mowing
  • Cutting out the plants including their roots


In order to prevent the cranesbill from spreading unintentionally, you should not compost the grass clippings, but dispose of them.

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